Sympra and Siemens Stiftung – in Egypt with the empowering people. Award

Colleagues, Anita Mäck and Dustin Hamilton, are recently back from Cairo where they supported Siemens Stiftung with their award ceremony celebrating social enterprise.

Siemens Stiftung has been an important client to Sympra since the inception of the empowering people. Award and subsequent empowering people. Network in 2012. The Foundation focuses on finding, encouraging, and supporting entrepreneurs from around the world with their sustainable solutions for social development.

To date, there have now been three ceremonies of the empowering people. Award with the most recent one being held in Cairo, Egypt on July 11, 2019. There, 11 social enterprises were showcased as they highlighted their respective solutions falling under categories such as Water & Sanitation, Healthcare, Mobility & Infrastructure, Energy, Food & Agriculture, and Education & Training to name a few. But, each enterprise started with a robust submission process which has led them to this point.

After a worldwide call for entries, Siemens Stiftung saw a record number of submissions with about 800 from 86 countries; the social enterprises’ submissions presented their business and social development plans. Entries received expert evaluation from partners that looked at each submission with four broad criteria in mind – technology, social impact, business, and team. Within each criteria, components such as technical functionality and feasibility, potential to solve basic problems, proof of concept and business model, and team competence and experience were scrutinized.

It was a challenge, but the expert evaluation team narrowed down the list to 11 finalists. It was these 11 finalists who showcased their social enterprises live in Cairo to the jury, local Egyptian journalists, Siemens colleagues (both from Germany and Egypt) and existing network members. The finalists represent some of the most impressive social entrepreneurs spanning five continents, all with unique and different perspectives from their important work in developing regions.

By the end of the evening, the Top 3 winners were selected, as well as the winners of the Special WASH Award and Community Prize. Taking 1st place was SOLshare with their decentralized peer-to-peer micro grids solution delivering solar power to households and businesses. Second place went to Nonspec’s Adjustable Prosthetic Pylon solution, and 3rd place went to Mind Rockets Inc. with their assistive technological solutions for the deaf and hard of hearing. The Special WASH Award (supported by Knorr-Bremse Global Care) went to AUTARCON’s self-sufficient drinking water treatment and supply system, and the Community prize went to Sesi Technologies’ Grain Moisture Meter. The Top 3 winners received €50K, €30K, and €20K respectively, and the 8 runners-up received €10K to help with their important work. Additionally, the WASH Award winner will get €20K, and Community prize winner, €10K.

Sympra has been involved with Siemens Stiftung since the first empowering people. Award and started from scratch (from creation to finalization) on all communications assets related to it. On site in Cairo, Anita and Dustin were hands-on as events occurred in parallel – from assisting with (but not limited to) social media, workshops, round table discussions, media interviews, and the award ceremony itself.

Beyond their work in Cairo, Anita and Dustin were able to experience a bit of the local culture by way of the Great Pyramids in Giza, at the Egyptian Museum, on a Felucca (local sailboat) cruise of the Nile River, and at various local eateries. Needless to say, both have been positively impacted by their professional and personal experiences in Cairo.

We here at Sympra look forward to continued work with Siemens Stiftung and the empowering people. Network. It has been an honour and we are proud to work alongside such inspiring and talented professionals. Congratulations again to everyone involved!

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